FALLSWAY Timber Limited, a timber processing firm in Kazungula District, is planning to list on Lusaka Stock Exchange (LuSE) next year under the Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs) tier to enable Zambians buy shares in the company.
Chairperson and managing director Shamji Bhai Vora said the plant would offer shares of about 70 per cent to the local people while owners of the firm would retain 30 per cent shares.
Speaking in Kazungula in an interview, Mr Vora said his company was committed to empowering local people.
Mr Vora said the plant would invest $2 million to set up horizontal and vertical wood processing unit with sawmilling, kiln drying and furniture producing with office showroom during the course of thi year and next year.
"We also plan to put up soft wood processing unit in Mufulira on the Copperbelt Province which would involve pine processing. This project is expected to commence in 2013," he said.
Fallsway Timbers Limited was also planning to open a special division for school furniture with modern machineries in Lusaka and Livingstone this year.
The firm would further strengthen its diversification efforts of distributing Zambian products away from its current core business of timber processing.
"We have already started door step deliveries to save on time and cost of local traders as well as business entities.
"This initiative has helped us to enhance empowerment and render services to local traders," he said.
Some of the firms which Fallsway Timber already engaged in its distribution initiative include British American Tobacco (BAT), Freshpikt Limited and Zambian Breweries.
Mr Vora said the plant was hoping to include more Zambian products in the initiative this year namely toilet papers, cooking oil, different detergents, agricultural products and pine wood timber.
Further, the plant was planning to put up more industries in areas of local beer production, mineral water, pharmaceutical manufacturing and vegetable processing once the company shares were successfully sold to the public.
Fallsway Timber Limited, which was registered on 20th May 1985 with an initial investment of $10 000, has presently invested more than $5 million to put up various processing machineries and other structures.
It produces about 600 cubic metres of finished and semi-finished timber products annually which are sold to the domestic as well as to the export markets especially in South Africa and Botswana.
The firm, which started operating with only 10 workers, has grown over the years and has 150 permanent employees currently with an annual turnover of US$ 1 million.